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Freiheit (Freedom)
Germany/Slovakia 2017

Opening 8 Feb 2018

Directed by: Jan Speckenbach
Writing credits: Andreas Deinert, Jan Speckenbach
Principal actors: Johanna Wokalek, Ricky Watson, Hans-Jochen Wagner, Inga Birkenfeld, Emil von Schönfels

A woman leaves her family without saying goodbye and begins a journey with no apparent destination. The story is told in three parts. The first part shows her traveling through Vienna and ending up in Bratislava. It is not clear why she has left her family or what she seems to be running from or towards. She gives a different name to everyone she meets and it is not until she begins to create a new life for herself in Bratislava that we slowly begin to learn something about her. Otherwise she is only a woman without responsibilities or attachments. The second part of the film focuses on her husband back home in Berlin who is searching for his missing wife while juggling the daily responsibilities of being a single working parent. He is a criminal lawyer working on a case he doesn’t want, his daughter is entering puberty and his lover wants more from him than he can give. The third part of the film goes back to the last night the family was together and reveals why Nora has left. The characters are difficult and it is hard to make any kind of attachment or sentiment towards them. Although Nora’s reason for leaving her family is shown, the end of the film leaves more a sense of questioning rather than understanding.  What is love? What is a relationship?  What is freedom?

The film is in German with English subtitles. This is Jan Speckenbach’s second film and the use of music, poetry, art and imagery is blended beautifully into the film. (Alana Leichert)

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